SALT LAKE CITY, May 22, 2019(GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Overstock.com, Inc.(NASDAQ:OSTK) announced that Medici Land Governance(MLG), its blockchain subsidiary focused on land administration, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with theLusaka City Council(LCC) that will lead to the issuance of no fewer than 250,000 certificates of title related to real property under the jurisdiction of LCC in and around the capital city ofZambia.
In addition to establishing a simplified, time-sensitive, and streamlined titling process that builds on the 50,000 homes upon which MLG collected governance information in the fall of 2018, the MOU calls for developing and deploying a land information management system to handle title transfers, title searches, and other transactions.
The MOU stipulates a revenue sharing arrangement between theLusaka City Counciland MLG. Under the terms of the MOU, the parties will work together to execute a definitive agreement within 90 days. The agreement is open ended, subject to review every two and a half years.
Data related to issuance of occupancy licenses, deed titles, payments and other revenue-generating transactions will be posted on a blockchain. The data will be accessible on an open source mobile platform to land owners, government agencies, local authorities, and private sector interests.
MLG recently completed a proof of concept project with Zambia’sMinistry of Lands and Natural Resourceswhich has facilitated the subsequent process, currently underway, of issuing 50,000+ certificates of title related to real property in and aroundLusaka. One of the fastest growing cities in southernAfrica,Lusakahas a population of at least 2.5 million in its metropolitan district.
“We are thrilled to extend our collaboration with the leaders ofLusaka, especially the city council and the mayor, who have graciously placed their confidence in this groundbreaking initiative,” saidAli El Husseini, PhD, CEO of Medici Land Governance. “Last year,Lusakawas the site of our first project and we look forward to working with city planners to show how blockchain and a digitized land administration system can transform the ways governments (especially local governments) and businesses operate along with giving individuals new opportunities for economic mobility and empowerment.”
“There is no more noble fulfilment to me than being part of a project that will empowerLusakaresidents with housing ownership,” saidMiles Sampa, Mayor ofLusaka. “While partnering with Medici Land Governance, we shall not leave anyone behind in the drive to create real sustainable wealth for families.”
Overstock CEO and founderPatrick M. Byrnesaid, “I believe this is a very big deal. Rule of Law begins with good land governance, which permits capital to come into existence, which is the first step of the process by which Less Developed Countries can emerge from poverty. It also permits local governments to develop their first proper tax revenue base to support the services which their citizens desire. This agreement withLusaka City Councilwill allow Medici Land Governance to implement its world-leading blockchain land governance technology to accelerate economic growth in Zambia’s capital through proper, accurate, inexpensive land governance. As importantly, for us it is a demonstration project to show not justLusaka, butZambia, the rest ofAfrica, and beyond, the benefits of land governance.”
Medici Land Governance was founded in 2018 to put the power of property ownership and equity into the hands of citizens by applying blockchain and other technologies to provide low-cost, easy-to-use land titling and administration systems. MLG is a subsidiary ofMedici Ventures, Overstock.com’s wholly-owned blockchain accelerator. Medici Ventures’ mission is to introduce blockchain technology to existing markets to democratize capital, eliminate middlemen, and re-humanize commerce.
Today,Medici Venturesoversees a globalkeiretsuofcompaniesbuilding the foundation of a technology stack for civilization based on trust systems that utilize blockchain and other technologies to reduce transactional friction. Medici Ventures’ network of companies are introducing blockchain technologies to industries such as capital markets, money and banking, identity, property, voting, and supply chain.
Overstock.com, IncCommon Shares (NASDAQ:OSTK) / Series A Preferred (Medici Ventures’ tZERO platform: OSTKP) / Series B Preferred (OTCQX:OSTBP)is an online retailer and technology company based inSalt Lake City, Utah. Its leading e-commerce website sells a broad range of new products at low prices, includingfurniture,décor,rugs,bedding,home improvement, and more. The online shopping site, which is visited by nearly 40 million customers a month, also features a marketplace providing customers access to millions of products from third-party sellers. Overstock was the first major retailer to accept cryptocurrency in 2014, and in the same year foundedMedici Ventures, its wholly-owned subsidiary developing and accelerating blockchain technologies to democratize capital, eliminate middlemen, and re-humanize commerce. Overstock regularly posts information about the company and other related matters on theNewsroomandInvestor Relationspages on its website,Overstock.com.
About Medici Land Governance
Medici Land Governanceleverages blockchain and other technologies to support land governance, titling, and administration with a secure public record of land ownership. With land records stored on the blockchain, land ownership is standardized and can be recognized by local and global economies. Blockchain applied to land improves lives, stimulates economies, and strengthens communities. Medici Land Governance supports agencies in the digitization of their current records, engendering trust and security in data by diminishing human error and accidental damage to records.
O,Overstock.com, O.com, Club O, Main Street Revolution, and Worldstock are registered trademarks ofOverstock.com, Inc. O.biz and Space Shift are also trademarks ofOverstock.com, Inc.Other service marks, trademarks and trade names which may be referred to herein are the property of their respective owners.
This press release contains certain forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Such forward-looking statements include all statements other than statements of historical fact. Additional information regarding factors that could materially affect results and the accuracy of the forward-looking statements contained herein may be found in the Company’s Form 10-Q for the quarter endedMarch 31, 2019, which was filed with theSEConMay 9, 2019, and any subsequent filings with theSEC.